First team football in a top division. The number 7 shirt. 80,000 passionate fans cheering your name.
This is the life young Englishman Jadon Sancho has managed to forge for himself at the age of just 17, thanks to some brutal, brave decisions by the young man.
Born in 2000, Sancho is unable to drink alcohol at this moment in time, but he finds himself sporting the Borrussia Dortmund shirt in the Bundesliga infront of ‘The Yellow Wall’. Dortmunds famous stand that has a capacity of 25,000.
This is a great experience for a young player, what makes it more suprising is that Sancho decided to up sticks from a comfortable academy life at Manchester City to move to the Westfalenstadion.
Rather than learn from seasoned pro’s and integrate occasionally into the first team under the tutelage of Pep Guardiola, Sancho saw fit to move to the Bundesliga in search of first team football. He has already been through a change of manager in his time there. With Stoger replacing Bosz in early December.
A move that has seemingly benefited young Jadon. Having now played 9 first team games for the Dortmund team, getting his first assist in a recent 1-1 draw with Hertha Berlin.
His move to the German giants took many in his homeland by suprise. Sancho was touted by the Man City backroom staff as a player who would be fast tracked into the first team setup in May 2017.But by July of the same year he had taken a decision to seek a new club.
This was reportedly down to him not being given assurances on first team football. So Dortmund paid City an £8m fee and he made his way onto the continent. Making his full Bundesliga debut against Wolsburg in January. Impressing on his first start, unlucky not to score as he struck the woodwork.
Predominantly a winger, he has excellent ball control, and willing to attack his full back. Sancho is a player clearly confident in his own ability. He suits the style of football in the Bundesliga as he roams the pitch looking for the ball. He has already shown football intelligence not normally associated with young English talent. Waiting patiently before attempting killer passes through defences.
He has represented England at U16,17 & 19 level and it is surely only a matter of time before he makes the next step in his international career with the U21 squad. A direct path into the full national team in years to come.
Currently out with a minor injury, he is expected to miss 2-3 weeks of games, but is expected to pick up where he left off with promising performances.
In a day and age where football fans condemn players for coasting through their luxurious lives, it is refreshing to see players such as Sancho, and recently Ademola Lookman take the leap and move out of their comfort zone to enhance their career and footballing ability.